Are you using relationships to grow your business?
In today’s episode, I am speaking with Dina Pruitt. Dina is one of our members inside of Serve Scale Soar and an E-commerce Growth Strategist specializing in the outdoor & fishing industry. Her agency D2 Strategic helps businesses with $100,000+ in annual online sales, increase their leads and revenue with Facebook ads, website conversion optimization and email marketing strategies.
What we’re talking about today is so relevant to what’s going on in 2021– From how the online atmosphere is changing to the relationships that you can build.
We’re getting into finding a niche, putting yourself out there, overcoming mindset blocks, building relationships, and so much more.
- How to find your niche- or how to let your niche find you!
- Remembering that you can pivot along your journey
- The power of focusing on one thing
- Putting yourself out there
- What it means to build relationships over revenue
- Taking action even when it’s not perfect
It’s amazing to see how Dina has niched down to a super specific niche and she’s tripled her results. If you niche down in 2021 and you 3x your results, what would your business look like by January 2022?
If you would like to connect with Dina and people just like her inside of Serve Scale Soar, head to www.servescalesoar.com/free and check out my free training where I teach you how to scale to consistent $10,000 months without hiring a team.
Follow @dinapruitt on Clubhouse
Don’t forget to sign up for my free training >> How to Scale to Consistent 10K Months Without Hiring a Team
Brandi Mowles: Today's episode, I am speaking with Dina Pruitt, she is one of our members inside of Serve Scale Soar, she's an eCom ad manager. But what we talk about today is so relevant to what's going on in 2021 and how the online atmosphere is changing the relationships that you can build and so much more. You're not going to want to miss this episode. Let's jump on in.
Welcome to the Serve Scale Soar podcast, the podcast dedicated to helping service-based entrepreneurs scale their online business to five figure months so they can soar into six figure years, your host, Brandi, is a wife, mom and in less than one year created a six figure business. And now she is spilling all her secrets. So you can to.
Brandi Mowles: Oh, my goodness, Serve Scale Soar family, I am so excited because I have one of our students from our program, Dina Pruitt is here, and I just cannot wait to share her story with you and for you all to get to know her a little bit better. So how about you tell my audience about who you are as a person, first and foremost, and then what you do in your business?
Dina Pruitt: Ok, hi, Brandi. I am super excited to be here and we talking to you today. My name is Dina Pruitt and I'm a wife, mom of two boys. I'm an avid reader and learner, probably over learning in some instances. And personally, I love being active. So for me that looks like getting outdoors and that's walking, running, hiking, trail running, biking, anything that keeps me active. And my favorite is a beach vacation, which I desperately need.
Brandi Mowles: Love that so much. And tell us about first off, trail running. So I just got back from Sedona as we're recording this and we saw we did a lot of hiking. I love hiking and we saw people doing trail running. And I was like, oh, my goodness, I'm like exhausted just watching you. So this is super cool that that's something you do.
Dina Pruitt: It's so much fun. It really is fun. I started out running just street running on the street, but then those friends got me into trail running and that just is even even better.
Brandi Mowles: And so where do you live then that you're doing trail running?
Dina Pruitt: I live in Arkansas, so we have beautiful scenic places all over. There's national forests, there's lots of trails. And so, yeah, it's a perfect environment for that.
Brandi Mowles: Very cool. I know nothing about Arkansas, like at all. I always tell people I always forget about the middle state somehow because I've just never visited them. So that is so cool that they have that. OK, so let's jump into your business now. Tell me a little bit about it.
Dina Pruitt: Ok, my business is D2 Strategic and the services I provide, I offer really two levels of services for e-commerce businesses. So I do done for you Facebook ads for businesses that are making at least five hundred thousand in revenue. And then I do ad intensives for businesses that are a different level and maybe aren't quite ready for those done for you ad services. But they're e-commerce businesses and they want to really build and build up their business and learn a little bit more. So there's some intensives with some support that kind of get them to grow and scale.
Brandi Mowles: Ok, so I love this, Dina, because I love Facebook ads, of course. But one thing that I always say is I don't do eCom. I'm not going to teach it. I don't do it. And you are fully in the ecom. So I know a lot of like there's all this jargon in the online world. And then we're all we all feel dumb because we don't know what something is. So can you explain to my audience what is ecom
Dina Pruitt: OK yes. And so Ecom is a business that sell physical products. And I actually meant to add that although I do have worked with a variety of businesses. Seventy five percent of my clients have been in the outdoor and fishing industry, so I've kind of niche down. It wasn't really intentional, but it turned out that way and it really ties in with my love of the outdoors. So I think that works out really well. So basically, Shopify store owners, woocommerce people that sell physical products, sometimes my clients do sell in physical stores also. I mean, they're distributed. Many of them actually have distribution across the US, but they also want to have a channel through their own online store.
Brandi Mowles: And you beat me to it because I was going to say I also want to chat about not only you niched down, so as you're listening, her service is Facebook and Instagram ads. Then she's niched to a specific industry, which would be e-commerce or a specific type of ads, and then down to even more niched to who she serves, which would be outdoor fishing, hunting, that type of thing, all outdoor activities. So I love that because that gets you super niche, which means you can charge higher prices. And the fact that you're working with people who are making in their business five hundred thousand or more. Like you are in this wonderful little niche bubble that is super small. And some people would be like, oh my gosh, I can't niche down that small because there's not enough people to serve. So tell us, you said this niche kind of found you. And we have this amazing conversation and conversions for clients the other day about like, oh, I don't know what my niche is. I don't know what it is. And I was like, sometimes your niche just finds you. Like, it just comes to you and you kind of have to explore a bunch of different areas and then you'll just figure it out. So that sounds like what happened to you. So tell us, how did you fall into this as your niche?
Dina Pruitt: Well, honestly, it was about relationships. So I I started my business three years ago and my previous I actually was a part-owner with a large group of people, started out with five people for like 20 years. We ran an agency and I ended up I was in that business, a Web development agency for like 20 years. And then when I left that and decided I wanted to just go out on my own, I leverage just people that I knew through my years of experience. And so over that time, I reconnected with someone who had been a previous client and we met and talked. And she was now working with businesses in the fishing industry, but she didn't offer Facebook ads. And it was just kind of the perfect meshing. She was doing PR and different things, and she needed a Facebook ads manager. And she actually originally brought me in as a social media manager. And I took that and turned it into running ads.
Brandi Mowles: So I love that so much. So then one, I love relationships. I think relationship service really well and clearly in yours. I also think that sometimes we get too wrapped up in our niche where we can always pivot like technically you went in there to do social media and then you pivoted to ads. I love that so many pivots happening in this. And then what happened to your business when you like niche down and started serving only this specific group of people?
Dina Pruitt: Yeah, this was the big change. And honestly, 2020 was that. So I got like my first client in 2019 and I have been doing all of the things from 2018 and 2019 really too many things to trying to figure out what it was I wanted to do. And I joined Serve Scale Soar actually I believe in the fall of twenty nineteen and I really started thinking about what it was I wanted to do. And so I made that intention to niche down and I was trying to figure out how I was going to do it. So between when I started January of 2020, I had only well I had really only one Facebook ads client and everybody else was a whole other variety of services and all different kinds of industries. And I made it my intention that I was going to focus on Facebook ads and niche down and the first quarter was rough because I, over the course of the well covid came in March. I lost my biggest ads client because they had to go into shut down and lay people off. But I decided I was going to focus. I decided I was going to stay in on this. I thought this was a niche that was going to work and I was going to focus on it. And I did that. By the end of the year, I had replaced all of my clients and was focused solely on Facebook ads. And I had actually in Q4, I had three times my revenue from Q1 simply because I focused on something.
Brandi Mowles: I love that and I love that you didn't just like throw in the towel because it would have been easy and understandable to be like God. Like my niche is struggling right now. I'm just going to throw in the towel, like, this is not the right thing for me. And instead, you just like you weathered the storm and you came out of the storm three Xing what you had at the beginning of Q1, which is just freaking fantastic. So what we're kind of like I'm sure there was some mindset things that happen there with like knowing that you just lost all your clients. What we're kind of your thoughts in the mindset around that when that all happened?
Dina Pruitt: Yeah, it was actually pretty interesting because right before Covid hit, I had really put myself out there. I had gone to a trade show right before everything shut down. And it was actually the Bassmaster Classic in Alabama. And I had never done anything like this before. And I was really kind of, you know, a little bit terrified. But I essentially walked the trade show floor for two days meeting people. And I went in there with not to try to really get clients. I just decided I was going to go there to learn and learn about the people in the businesses. And during the course of that trade show and being there, I met my next two clients, one business that when he first met me, he was all about just selling a trade shows. And he said Facebook ads didn't work for him. And I ended up talking to him a little by little. And over time, basically, by the time I got back home and Covid had shut everything down, he was ready to turn to Facebook ads and reached out to me. And that got that going. So it definitely was a mindset. It was really being able to kind of put myself out there in a way that felt very uncomfortable for me. And yet when I made my purpose to be connecting with people, it made it a whole lot easier.
Brandi Mowles: I love that. And I talk about that so much is like building relationships over revenue, because when you build the relationships, the revenue will come and doing these things without expecting anything in return. And I think one thing from an ad standpoint that we'll see moving forward in 2021 is it's not like it's a new year and automatically we're going to have trade shows again, like the wedding industry. I think about those expos, like pregnancy expos, like that's where a lot of people get their exposure. And now it's not like those things are probably going to happen, at least I would say, for the first six months, if not longer. And so how can we as ad managers really like I don't want to say capitalize, but that is the word on that. And I love that now. I don't love it. But it's opened up a new window for us as service providers to provide service to a whole new industry that has never, ever had to rely on Facebook ads before. So are you seeing that happen now as well?
Dina Pruitt: Absolutely. I mean, it was going through Q4 and Black Friday and Cyber Monday the previous year. I had just one client that was doing that. And then this year I had five. And it was a crazy time everywhere. There were so many people advertising. It was such a competitive space. But yes, a lot more people are turning to Facebook ads and seeing actually the power. And I mean, thank goodness, honestly, the business owner that I began working with, it literally saved his business. I mean, he would have had no sales really at all. And that was such that's been such a an amazing thing for me to feel like not just that I'm running ads because you can do that, but that it made a real difference in the lives of him and his family and his wife. And it is a small business owner. And so, yes, I think that people are seeing the power of this and realizing that they've got to make these connections right now, at least, like you said, when we can't we're not fully open doing things. We've got to find other ways to reach our clients.
Brandi Mowles: So I want to backtrack a little bit because we've went deep into Facebook ads and one of my favorite topics to talk about. But I want to go back to you've had your business for three years. How did you get started in the online space?
Dina Pruitt: My background, honestly, I've been in digital marketing for 20 years, so I was part of an agency. My whole background was building out websites and being a website project manager and developer for really in the tourism industry. I worked with lots of tourism-based businesses all over the country. So from like state of Utah to Alabama, Gulf Coast to Elvis Presley Enterprises, I worked with them on building their websites. So I've always been in the online space. I really was very interested in marketing and in data analytics. And so when I when I decided to go out on my own, I knew that was where I wanted to be. I wanted to kind of focus my energy on marketing and in the online space. So that's how I started. But I started out doing all the things because I think sometimes you just kind of have to. You've got to try a lot of different things to see what you do and don't want to do.
Brandi Mowles: I totally agree. So what made you go out on your own?
Dina Pruitt: I think I was just ready for a change. You know, I have been doing something for a long time and I wanted to take my business in a different direction than the agency that I was working with. So this gave me an opportunity to kind of do it and do it the way that I wanted to see it grow.
Brandi Mowles: And I think that's really inspiring for a lot of people because so many people are now finding covid like we can't go into work, layoffs happen like all of this stuff. And I think more and more businesses will now realize that they can work remotely. But I think even more important, people are learning that there's this whole world online where you can actually create your own business, have super low overhead and do the exact same thing that you're doing at your 9:00 to 5:00. But be your own boss and probably make a lot more money. So I think that that is really inspiring, that you had this career, you were doing the same thing that you're doing now, but you were doing it for, I'm guessing, a boss and now you are your own boss. So can you tell us kind of like how that transition was?
Dina Pruitt: Yeah, it was it was a little bit scary, but also and it was slow. I mean, for me, it was slow. You're a quick starter. You actually were very inspiring to me. But I needed more time. I needed more warm up. I needed to do more learning, to feel a little more certain. And I had a lot going on actually personally at home and some real neat reasons. I needed to be home and working from home and not going to a job every day. So I was fortunately able to take the time to do that and sort of let it grow and build. I mean, I did have to bring money into my family income, but I had some flexibility there, which was nice. But I also felt a lot of internal pressure to really, you know, get myself to where I wanted to be. So I just continue to reach out to people and continue to learn. I mean, I invested a lot in learning and training, but because that's the way my mind works, and then when I found you, I paid very close attention to how you talk about pushing people out there and not waiting for things to be exactly right and taking quick action.
Brandi Mowles: Yeah. And I would also argue three years to have a super profitable business is not a long time. Like most businesses fail after three years, most are not profitable until after five. So you say that you're not a quick start, but I think that as soon as you got the information you needed, you were a quick start. And so it's all relative to how we look at it. And you were able to be at home for anything that needed to be done. And I think that that's the power of having an online business. Sometimes we judge it by what other people are doing, but we don't realize like we're on our own journey and the timing's perfect for what we need to be doing. And you started taking quick action when it was the right time for you. And there's a lot of power in that.
Dina Pruitt: Yeah, that's a really good point and good to remember.
Brandi Mowles: Yeah, absolutely. So tell us, what has been your biggest challenge in having your own business?
Dina Pruitt: Well, I would say my biggest challenge has been kind of over thinking and over learning and spending time just trying to make sure that I knew exactly what I had to do, investing in a lot of courses and training to get where I wanted to be. So that really has been the challenge to just go out there and do something and take action. And it may not be exactly right and may not be perfect, but I'm further along. So that's really pushed me. That's been the mindset piece that's been the hardest.
Brandi Mowles: Yeah. And so what would you say to someone who's struggling with that exact same thing? Because I know that there's a lot of people listening that struggle with that exact same thing.
Dina Pruitt: I would say create a timetable for yourself. I read somewhere or learn somewhere this concept of just in time learning. And I really try to kind of internalize that and bring that end where you learn just what you need, just enough that you need to know to get started and do something. Because the truth is, once I got started with Facebook ads and anything that was new to me, my learning just like tripled, just like completely accelerated versus what it would have taken if I just kept trying to learn without actually taking some action.
Brandi Mowles: Absolutely. It's just like when people I always tell my Facebook ad managers that you can read a book on how to ride a bike all day long, but that does not mean, you know, how to ride the bike until you actually get on and start pedaling. And so it's the same thing with any of your services. So I think that that is amazing advice. And one piece of advice on that I always like to look at is like, how can I put a timeline, just like you said, on how quickly can I make my investment back? So like when I took my first Facebook and courses, three thousand dollars, and that was the most that I ever spent besides like on a college class. And I remember saying, like, OK, I need three clients at a thousand dollars and pay it back. And so when I started my first month in January, like marketing myself, that was my goal. Three clients, just because if I could get three clients, then I could pay it back. I got three clients. I went all out a thousand. But that second month, they were still my clients and it paid it back. So I always like to look at it like that too. Like how quickly can I make my investment back? And then if I decide to pivot my services, it's not a big deal. I've already made my money back and in the process I learn a new skill along the way.
Dina Pruitt: Yeah, absolutely. I really like thinking about that, that I and I have attracted that carefully, but that's really smart. And I invested I probably have taken like four Facebook ad clients because like I said,I'm over learner, but I feel good about it, about where I am right now.
Brandi Mowles: Ok, so what has been your biggest win in your business?
Dina Pruitt: So, OK, I thought about this and I think it brought me back to the story. I think I just kind of shared with you, which was for me that win was overcoming my mindset, going out and pushing myself outside of my comfort zone, meeting people in person and bringing on my own client myself. I used to for years when I was in my other agency, I said I hated sales and I thought I did. I mean, because I was more of an implementer. I worked with clients. I worked with people. I didn't do sales. But what I've discovered is that I love it. It's actually the thing that I love most about my business right now, because it's not I now understand it's not sales, it's relationships. And honestly, that's the thing I love the most. That's been my biggest win, like learning that that is something that I love to do and that when I connect with people and I can make a difference for them, it fulfills me in a way that actually other work really has it.
Brandi Mowles: That's so beautiful. I love that. Turning sales into relationships. It's amazing. I love that. OK, so before we wrap this up, I do want to jump in to some rapid-fire. It does not have to be the first word that comes to your mind, but the first thing. Are you ready?
Dina Pruitt: Sure.
Brandi Mowles: OK, so what is the favorite part of your business?
Dina Pruitt: All right. And I think I just kind of blended these two because right now it really is. It's so sales. It's honestly, it's it's the discovery calls. It's talking to new businesses, people all over the country kind of learning about them and making those connections and that relationship. It's the thing that I love the most.
Brandi Mowles: I love that. And what's your favorite software tool that you can't live without?
Dina Pruitt: All right. I don't know if you if anyone said this one before, but there's a it's called Snagit. And it is a screen capture software and it lets you capture images and record videos and edit. And I literally have used this tool every day for at least ten years.
Brandi Mowles: I've I've heard of it, but I didn't know it could do videos. So now I'm intrigued because I'm thinking about ads that are videos that I want to snag. So I like this.
Dina Pruitt: You can record all you can record all kinds of things. Yeah. So it's pretty fun.
Brandi Mowles: I like this. OK, that's a new one to us. I thought you were going to say Facebook ad manager, so I love that one. That's awesome. OK, what is the best piece of advice you've ever received for your business?
Dina Pruitt: All right, so the best piece of advice. I've heard this a lot of different ways, but it's done is better than perfect. And I think the Brandi version is get that dang thing done. And it's really just like that actually is hanging on my wall because it really is about pushing myself to take action and get it done and not just, you know, keep waiting until I think it's perfect enough to get it out there.
Brandi Mowles: Yeah. So I'm totally guilty of saying just do the damn thing. So I love that. And then tell me what you're in Serve Scale Soar. So tell me, what is your favorite part about being in Serve Scale Soar?
Dina Pruitt: Ok, well, I actually am going to have to say two things because honestly, I think your trainings are absolutely amazing. I mean, anyone that follows them, they literally, I believe, are a roadmap for success for any service provider. I mean, honestly, the pricing formula, the systems for scaling marketing minutes, like everything in those trainings are so concise and so actionable, like it is really pure gold. So I love the trainings that are inside there. I mean, I find myself going back to them from time to time, even though I haven't been through everything, I do go back to them because they are so concise and actionable. So that's one. But obviously the community and the fact that I through your community, I've met who is now might like I call her like my biz bestie who lives like twenty minutes from me. I didn't know her. She lives here right outside of Little Rock. And I met her and found out, like through Facebook. I saw that she was in Serve Scale Soar, but I saw because she posted on a local Facebook group. And we have now connected up and have made such a strong connection and friendship with her name is Tammy. And that's just been a super cool thing to have those connections.
Brandi Mowles: Tammy is one of my favorite people and she has raved about you as well. So I love that. Yes, relationships are everything. And I think that's been the common theme through this whole episode and that just makes me so happy. I love relationships. So, Dina, this has been so amazing. And I know that my audience will just want to say hey and thanks for your insights and sharing your story. So where can they connect with you?
Dina Pruitt: People can find me at my website is D2Strategic.com and I'm on Instagram @D2strategic. And I'm also on Clubhouse @DinaPruitt. And that's kind of a new and fun thing. And I'm going to be doing some setting up some rooms and there. So that's another way to connect once if people are on or get on Clubhouse, love it.
Brandi Mowles: Ok, we will make sure to link all that in the same note so you can just connect Wadena, maybe it's on Instagram, maybe it's on Clubhouse. And we will see what comes of this social media channel. And 2021. It's always fun when these new things pop up. So, Dina, thank you so much. And we will chat soon.
Brandi Mowles: Serve Scale Soar house dinking. Amazing was Dana. I just loved all the relationships she's used to build her business relationships from connecting it live events to building relationships and communities to really, really building relationships with friends in person. That's what this business is all about. It's all about relationships and how can you build more relationships? And when we start focusing on relationships over revenue, the revenue will naturally grow. I love this episode and I'm sure Dina would love for you to message her on Instagram. Just send her quick D.M. and let her know what really sparked your interest in this episode. I love how she's niched down to a super specific niche and she's seen massive results, three x her results, all if units down in 2021 and you three extra results. What would your business look like January of 2022. And if you would like to connect with DNA and people just like DNA inside of Serve Scale Soar head to Serve Scale Soar dot com forward slash free and check out my free training where I teach you how to scale the consistent ten thousand months without hiring a team and until next week go out, serve your clients, scale your business and soar into that six figure year you deserve.
Thanks again for tuning in to the Serve Scale Soar podcast with your host, Brandi, if you loved our podcast. Please be sure to leave a comment or review and be sure to tune in next time.
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Brandi Mowles is the host of the Serve Scale Soar podcast which is a podcast dedicated to helping service-based entrepreneurs scale their online business to five-figure months so they can soar into six-figure years. Brandi is a wife, mom and in less than one year, created a six-figure business. Now she is spilling all her secrets so you can too.